Ride-hailing giant Uber is expanding electric car rides to more cities with its new “Comfort Electric” option, but it starts with teaching drivers how to open Tesla’s doors.
In 2021, car rental company Hertz announced a major move to electrify its rental fleet, with plans to buy 100,000 Tesla Model 3 vehicles.
Soon after, Hertz announced that, in addition to adding Teslas to its rental fleet, the company had a partnership agreement with Uber to allow its drivers to rent Teslas. Uber plans to lease its first 50,000 Tesla vehicles to drivers, and if the plan is successful, the company could lease more cars.
Uber recently introduced a “Comfort Electric” option that will pay drivers more when Uber users choose to use an electric vehicle. The fleet includes the Tesla Model 3, Model Y and Polestar 2, but Tesla vehicles make up the vast majority.
Last month, Uber revealed that it already has 15,000 Tesla vehicles in its fleet through the Hertz deal. On Tuesday, Uber announced the expansion of the program to seven new cities.
“Now, we’re announcing the expansion of Comfort Electric to seven additional cities, including Las Vegas, Seattle, Portland, Denver, Austin, Philadelphia and Baltimore,” the company said in a statement. , San Diego and Los Angeles launched the Comfort Electric.”
In promoting the program, though, Uber has received a lot of feedback that drivers are having trouble opening Tesla’s doors. In response, Uber said: “We’ve heard from drivers that some people have a hard time figuring out how to open their Tesla doors. Don’t worry, we’ll help!”
Their solution was to send a push notification to the driver explaining how to open the door handle before getting into the car. The new push notifications start Tuesday and will expand to new cities. Uber has yet to update the number of Tesla vehicles in its fleet.
Opening the Model 3 and Model Y needs to explain that it is nothing new. Taxi drivers in New York City received similar instructions long ago.